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NDRRMC: Bad weather hampers efforts to contain oil spill from sunken ship

August 6, 2011 8:00am
Bad weather conditions are hampering attempts by the Coast Guard to contain an oil spill from a ship that sank off Western Visayas last weekend.

The National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) said Friday night the Coast Guard had sent teams to contain the oil spill from the MV Asia Malaysia.

"Oil Spill Response Team (OSRT) personnel (Coast Guard) Special Operations Group (SOG) divers were mobilized to the site to spray oil dispersant. However, the team decided to stop the operations due to unfavorable weather condition," the NDRRMC said in a 7 p.m. Friday update.

Last Thursday, the PCG dispatched its tugboat Habagat to Bredo Port in Bacolod City to support the ongoing oil-spill containment efforts.

Civilian divers from Trans Asia Company, which owned the ill-fated vessel, also assisted in a survey of the ship's fuel piping and tanks to determine the source of the spill.

The MV Asia Malaysia listed and sank last Sunday off Western Visayas.

An investigation by the Coast Guard's Special Board of Marine Inquiry is now ongoing.

It has so far investigated at least seven of its rescued passengers, the NDRRMC noted.

Meanwhile, the Coast Guard Western Visayas command has asked Trans Shipping Lines to hire an accredited salvor to siphon off the oil from the sunken ship.

Also, it asked the ship's owner to "constantly coordinate with LGUs and coastal community leaders in the area regarding preparations and efforts at containment of the oil spill." — LBG, GMA News
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